Published: May 27, 2014
Avenge Me (Fifth Avenue Series) – Maisey Yates
Maisey isn’t a new author to me. I’ve read LOTS of her books in the past. I’ve read at least fifteen of her books. She’s put out at least twice that, so I’ve still got some catching up to do. My point is, I love her writing and I love her books.
I have to say though, I think Avenge Me is her best work. I bought it yesterday afternoon, and started reading it earlier this evening. I could not put it down. COULD NOT. I finished the entire book in about four hours. It’s not a huge book ( 264 pages roughly) but that’s still a little faster than I normally read.
I was so entranced by the characters, sucked into their world that I could do nothing else. I got grumpy towards the end of the book. I was almost to the epilogue and one of my friends insisted on texting me and starting a conversation. I’d have to put the book down to see what she said… and as soon as I picked it back up to get lost back in the world of the book, my phone would go off again.
CAN’T YOU SEE I’M TRYING TO READ?!
Anyway. I should probably talk a little about the book, eh?
Avenge Me is the first book in a new series by Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, and Kate Hewitt. Each of author has their own book, and each is it’s own complete story… but all three books are connected. I’m going to have to wait until the end of June to get the next one in the series Scandalize Me by Caitlin Crews and then until the end of August for the third book Expose Me by Kate Hewitt. Unless I can get my freckled little paws on some ARC copies. With my luck, I’ll be waiting impatiently.
In Avenge Me we meet Austin Treffen, successful lawyer and business man. He comes from a very wealthy family, but is also very, very wealthy in his own right. On the surface he seems like a man in his prime, with nothing standing in his way of success. Except, he’s haunted. Haunted by the knowledge that one of his close friends committed suicide ten years ago and he couldn’t find a way to stop it. Haunted by the knowledge that it’s his father’s fault that his friend is gone… that his father isn’t the hero he idolized as a boy. Haunted by his desires.
Ten years ago, Austin was your typical rich kid playboy. He was young and didn’t worry much about anything but himself. His friend Sarah came to him, and said she needed his help, that she was going through somethings, and he couldn’t seem to bother himself with reaching out to help her. She later commits suicide at a party for his father’s law firm that Austin is in attendance at. It kills him. Kills him that she’s gone and he did nothing.
Fast forward ten years and Austin learns that his father — who is also a lawyer and an advocate for abused women — had a hand in Sarah’s ultimate death. Austin’s father is seen by the community as a savior. A good guy that can do no wrong. But that’s a lie. He’s an evil man that does horrible things to women. He finds women that are in a weak spot, either emotionally or financially, and provides them a job or pays off bills for them. After doing that, he makes it clear that it’s expected of them to make themselves available to him… and to his horrible friends. The women can say no, but all of the “help” they’ve been receiving disappears. He makes these women so dependent on him and his evil brand of help that they can’t say no. Basically, this supposed advocate for women who are being abused is himself an abuser. His law firm is a cover for what he does. His “friends” pay for dates by these women, and then they’re abused. Both by those so called friends (who are also high standing members of society) and Austin’s father.
Sarah was one of those women. She got sucked into that horrible place and it broke her. It killed her spirit and her soul… so she took things into her own hands and prevented it from happening ever again.
Austin is horrified when he learns the truth. Horrified and disgusted by what his father has been doing. He, along with his friends (who are in this book, but get their own stories in the sequels) vow to do whatever they have to to bring Austin’s father down and end it.
Austin is also struggling with himself. He’s always had desires that he’s kept hidden from those around him. He’s got a bit of a kink, and it scares him. He wants to have control in the bedroom, to have control over a woman and her body and that terrifies him. He only gives into those thoughts and desires when he’s by himself… never when he’s with a partner. Especially now after finding out about his father’s dastardly deeds. He sees himself as following in the same violent footsteps.
He keeps this all to himself… until he meets Katy Michaels. They meet at a party for Austin’s father’s law firm and are instantly attracted. Katy is Sarah’s younger sister. She’s come to discover exactly what happened to her sister to drive her to suicide, and to bring down the older Treffen. Austin and Katy meet and give in to the attraction. No names are shared, so neither of them has any idea who the other is. Because they keep it anonymous, he’s able to unleash a bit of what he’s been desiring for so long, and she’s able to freely ask for it. It’s carnal and dark but not violent.
He freaks out just a bit after everything and then freaks out more when she tells him her name. He just slept with Sarah’s little sister. Poor guy. He know’s who she is now, but she has no clue who he is. Until several days later, anyway. Austin stops by his father’s office and overhears Katy in his fathers office in the middle of a discussion with his father, who is trying to discretely make Katy have to depend on him… so that she’ll end up like the others. She’s smarter than that and is able to decline, but ends up running into Austin in the hall. She’s shocked to see him and is even more shocked to learn who he is.
Austin has strong protective urges when it comes to Katy and wants to keep her safe. Though, so accomplish that, he turns into a bit of an ass. He talks her into getting a ride from him so that they can talk privately… and then he calls and has her fired from her job. And then he asks her to move in with him… for “safety”. She’s pissed and turns him down. Thanks to being fired, she’s kicked out of her apartment by her roommate (Katy is two months behind on the rent and now she’s unemployed). Left with no other option, she calls Austin and tells him to get his ass back to her apartment to collect her things.
Things are tense between the two after they first move in together, but once they start to have a semblance of a relationship, things start to even out. Austin is still freaked out by his need to have control, but isn’t doing much to keep it from Katy… because she likes it. They both are working hard to find all the evidence they need to bring down Mr. Treffen.
It isn’t until Austin goes to reveal his father’s evil doings to his mother and sister (with Katy tagging along) that things start to go to shit. He’s planning a public take down of this father, and he needs to warn both his sister and his mother before that happens. Austin is hopeful that he can persuade his mother to divorce his father after he tells her the news. Mrs. Treffen admits that she’s always had her suspicions that her husband had been unfaithful, and confronted with the news that it’s an actual reality and that he’s been involved in illegal activities, she claims feeling ill and leaves the discussion.
Several days later, Austin receives word through an angry phone call from his father, that his mother went along with them and asked her husband for a divorce in public. LOUDLY. Mr. Treffen is blindsided and wants Austin to help him. Austin agrees to meet his father at his office, but calls his mother on the way to talk to her about it. She admits to Austin that his father also abused her. That he made her afraid. Now fueled with the anger that this new knowledge has lent him, he meets his father and very clearly lets him know that Austin will be helping his mother with the divorce, and that he hates his father. At one point he’s tempted to kill the man, and almost does but holds onto his control. His need to see his father’s downfall overrides his desire to kill him.
Still riding high from that meeting, he goes to his apartment to see Katy. Things… happen. He’s not violent, and not abusive. He’s not controlling at all. He’s as vanilla as you can be. When she tells him that she loves him, he panics. Calls her stupid and throws her love back in her face. Katy isn’t a weak woman. She gives as good as she gets. She stands up for herself and leaves, rather than stick around with an infuriating man that broke her heart.
He’s wrecked without her. She’s a mess without him, but stronger because she knows she’s worth more than what he was giving her. They both are so good for each other. They compliment each other and heal each other. Austin’s finally able to get his head out of his ass and goes to find her to make amends. They are both better together now than they were before, and they can move forward, both with bringing down Mr. Treffen and with getting past their demons, together.
I can’t wait to see what happens with Scandalize Me. I think each book will be able to be read as a stand alone… but they should probably be read together and in order to fully grasp the story.
Maisey has some other books coming out soon that are parts of a series of her’s I’ve been reading. I’m way excited for those. I also learned while poking around on her website that there is a prequel to this series! It’s not out yet, but it will be out next Monday. I think it’s only available in eBook format, but I could be wrong. I can’t wait to read that either.
Like I said in the beginning, I think this book was some of Maisey’s best work. I’d give this one a 10/10 and I have to find book shelf space for my copy. I’ll definitely be re-reading this one.